Back Matter

Appendix Table 1:

Review of First Generation Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers

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Appendix Table 2:

Data availability by country

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Notes: When both data on consumption and income shares are available for the same year, only income data are retained.* Excluded from the sample because the $1.25/day poverty headcount available in POVCALNET is too low to be relevant during all the study period. **Excluded due to lack of poverty data from POVCALNET.*** PRSP dates approximated on the basis of related information posted on the external website of the IMF and the World Bank.
Appendix Table 3:

Data sources

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1

Senior Advisor to the IMF Executive Director for Francophone Africa Constituency. The views expressed herein are my own and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF, its Executive Directors and the countries they represent, or its Management. I thank, without implicating, Ruben Lamdany, Franz Loyola, Francesco Luna, Matthew Martin, Rakesh Mohan, Anta Ndoye, Carlos De Resende, Ngueto Yambaye, and IMF colleagues for helpful discussions and useful comments on previous versions of this paper. All errors and omissions are mine.

2

In this paper, full PRSPs are distinguished from interim-PRSPs that were usually issued prior to the finalization of the final PRSPs.

4

The World Bank defines countries in fragile situations as those that have either a) a harmonized average CPIA country rating of 3.2 or less, or b) the presence of a UN and/or regional peace-keeping or peace-building mission during the past three years.

5

See Desai (2007) for a broad overview of large-scale antipoverty programs, including conditional and unconditional cash transfers, public works, and in-kind transfers. To a lesser extent, there has also been perceptible interest in asset-based programs that have notably aimed to ease access to financing through microfinance institutions.

6

Kalusopa, Dicks, and Osei-Boateng (2012), find mandatory social security to benefit less than one-tenth of the labor force in the region.

7

See the Economist (2013) which argues that the renewed interest in these transfer schemes presumes a fundamental departure from the usual caricature of the poor as prone to irrational behavior and irresponsible fund management.

9

See for instance Schubert and Slater (2006).

10

See Gelli, Meir, and Espejo (2007) on the impact of school feeding programs on school enrollment in a sample of 32 Sub-Saharan African countries.

12

IMF (May 2013), Regional Economic Outlook—Sub-Saharan Africa: Building Momentum in a Multi-Speed World. And IMF (October 2013), Regional Economic Outlook—Sub-Saharan Africa: Keeping the Pace.

13

When more than one data spell are available for a country, the longest one is selected.

14

See Balakrishnan, Steinberg, and Syed (2013) on how the specifications of the model match the poverty literature.

17

Thorbecke (2013) offers a detailed review of the literature on the reverse causality between reduced poverty and more inclusive growth in Sub-Saharan Africa. Go and others (2007) also provide some evidence that inequality is a strong predictor of growth in the region, implying that the patterns of income distribution are indirectly affected by poverty.

18

The dataset used in this paper selects available POVCALNET surveys-based estimates of the income or consumption share of the bottom quintile as measure of welfare of the poor. For terminological convenience, this share is referred to only as income share in the rest of the paper.

19

Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, and Zimbabwe were excluded from the sample due to data shortcomings, while Mauritius and Seychelles were not selected because the few POVCALNET data available for these countries show no instances where the $1.25/day poverty headcount exceeded 1 percent over the period 1990 onwards.

20

In all non-PRSP countries selected in the sample the $1.25/day poverty headcount index available in POVCALNET has exceeded 10 percent at least once since 1990. On the basis of this cutoff rule, a few non-PRSP countries from Sub-Saharan Africa were excluded from the sample, including Mauritius and Seychelles. Due to poverty data shortcomings Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea and Zimbabwe were not selected.

21

Similar evidence on the pro-poor content of growth and the negative poverty impact of inequality in developing and emerging regions is particularly widespread in the literature. See for instance Christiansen and others (2013) and Balakrishnan, Steinberg, and Syed (2013).

22

The tests consisted in assigning artificial dates of PRSP implementation to each of these countries and comparing the regressions results with those obtained using the actual implementation dates. The two sets of regressions produced broadly similar results, implying that improvements in poverty outcomes that took place in these countries cannot be conclusively attributed to PRSP implementation. Other factors inherent in the study period could have contributed to these outcomes, including worldwide low interest rates and favorable commodity price developments.

23

The lack of causality from PRSP implementation to poverty reduction is evidenced by the results of abovementioned tests involving the use of artificial PRSP implementation dates.

24

However, this result must be cautiously interpreted given that the dataset used in this paper only covers the first three years of the current decade.

25

In performing this estimation procedure, the PRSP dummy is used as the dependent binary variable in the selection equation while the level of income and inequality are assumed to determine a country’s decision to adopt the PRSP.

26

This threshold is $1,215 in fiscal year 2015.

27

The overwhelming majority of IDA eligible countries have produced at least one PRSP, which compounds the difficulty of forming a broad control group with similar characteristics as PRSP countries. Selected IDA countries that did not embark on the PRSP process include India, Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, and St Lucia.

28

The results are robust to the exclusion of India from the list of non-PRSP IDA borrowing countries.

Poverty, Growth, and Inequality in Sub-Saharan Africa: Did the Walk Match the Talk under the PRSP Approach?
Author: Mr. Daouda Sembene